Not tipping your bartender? In this economy? Not cute. 

Having lived through a good few months of #StayingAtHome and #WorkingFromHome and #GettingFatAtHome, there’s no denying that we’re happy to see our favourite restaurants, cafes, and bars back open for business as almost-usual. 

After all, it’s been interesting to see how many places used the spare chunk of time thrown at them during the lockdown period. Many decided to re-think their concepts or re-design their menus, while others came back with their beloved classics bigger, bolder, and stronger. 

Love it or hate it, though many spots have reopened, we don’t want to hide behind rose-coloured glasses and ignore those that had to close for good. COVID-19 hasn’t been easy for most businesses, and the hospitality industry has been hit as one of the hardest.

As we continue to support our friends and the local food and drink scene, we’ve come to notice that perhaps there has to be some sort of re-design and re-thinking of dining etiquette in itself. Though we’re not health experts, we’ve noted some new movements in the world of sips and slurps, causing us to devise a somewhat new (normal) rulebook for dining out. Read ahead for our scoop.

[Hero & Featured Image Credit: Kate Townsend/Unsplash]

Image Credit: Wiktor Karkocha/Unsplash

1. Actually show up

It was always pretty crappy to pull a no-show, and this applies now even more than before. If you’ve made a reservation somewhere, be sure to actually be there and be there on time, or let them know well in advance if you can’t make it. Time (and blocked tables) are money — money that goes towards pending bills and staff salaries. Given the limited seating permitted in a socially distanced world, you’re also blocking valuable space. Don’t be a flakey guy. Nobody likes that guy. 

2. Inner circle only

Remember when restaurants reopened and we had to sit metres away from our friends? And then remember when plastic shields were introduced so we had to eat as if we were behind prison glass? Whilst we’re certainly loving that we don’t have to experience either of those things anymore, let’s not overdo it either. Large groups in public places are still a no-no, and keeping your distance from other tables is still a must-do. 

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3. Open-mindedness

Look, this whole situation has been pretty tough for almost everybody. Don’t be rude to wait staff (though you should have abided by this before), as it’s likely they too are still adjusting to new rules. Keep an open mind and consider that everyone is adapting, and everyone is learning. A lot of these things take time, and it’s not really the waiter’s fault if the temperature reader scanner thing is a bit slow. 

4. Share the love (not the virus)

Here’s where your #foodiegram obsession can come in handy. Help promote small businesses and your favourite secret spots by sharing what you love about them on your socials. Many have reduced (or entirely non-existent) marketing budgets, so spreading the word can really help those that may be in jeopardy. Like, share, tag, or use that new IG function that allows you to directly connect with the small business you want to feature. Savvy AF. 

Image Credit: Callie Morgan/Unsplash

5. Don’t be a freeloader

Asking for free stuff is not really the vibe right now. Don’t be ridiculous. 

6. Tip your bartender

Tip your bartender, your waiter, your waitress, or anyone else you want to show a little support to. It’s a kind gesture during these trying times, and a nice way to show support. Remember when they were there for you when that girl broke your heart and you drank your weight in Japanese gin? Or when you wanted to impress your date and they surprised her with an extra slice of cheesecake? Or when they looked out for you when the cops were coming to tow away your car that Sunday? 

Image Credit: Daniele Angele/Unsplash

Now more than ever, it’s time to tip, fam. 

Have any points to add? Reach out to us on Facebook or Instagram to let us know. 

Lisa Gries
Managing Editor, Bangkok
Lisa loves to travel, and is always on the lookout for the world’s best nap spots. She’s a serious Asian art history nerd, and has a knack for languages and coffee table books. She hopes to publish her own novels one day, one of which will likely be called ‘All The Great Conversations I Had In A Bangkok Speakeasy.’ It’s a work in progress.